Club & Members Layouts

CMRCI has three layouts.

“Baldwin Park” – a HO static layout

“Petersville” – a HO  exhibition layout, and

“Smith’s Crossing – a HO scale childrens U-drive layout for exhibitions and displays.

Baldwin Park – the CMRCI static layout

The primary reason for building the layout was to give members who do not have a layout at home, somewhere to run trains, test locos and rolling stock, etc.  It is also useful to enable members to learn new skills, such as track laying, electronics and scenery.

The under frames are constructed of welded 25mm steel tube, which supports an overlaying plywood base board.  The overall size is approximately 8m x 2m. The layout has two levels, as you can see in the photographs.

Baldwin Park – the CMRCI static layout during construction

Tracks are Peco 100 gauge and Peco turnouts have been used throughout with Circutron Tortoise point motors.  The track plan is a series of simple interconnected loops on the lower level, leading up to a yard and round house on the top level. There are also a number of industrial sidings around the layout.

The control and track power is provided by a NCE DCC system using radio control.

The track plan also includes a large discrete DC circuit for owners of DC locomotives.  This track has its own fiddle yard and control system.


Baldwin Park – the CMRCI static layout on its way to completion

While Baldwin Park was not originally designed for operations, some members are currently investigating the possibilities and are developing operating serials.Thanks to the efforts of a crew of members the scenery is almost completed, but of course there are always improvements to be made.

Petersville – the CMRCI exhibition layout

In 2013 it was decided that the previous exhibition layout “Crestwood” was getting a bit tired and needed to be replaced.  It had won two “Best in Show” awards and numerous other honourable mentions, but was past its prime.  Work was stated on a new exhibition layout, after considerable discussion and false starts.

When “Crestwood” was sold in late 2013, the construction of a replacement exhibition layout became an urgent priority.  The new layout (named Petersville because of the number of our Members who bear that prestigious name) was first displayed at the 2014 Malkara exhibition and has since appeared at the Canberra, Wagga Wagga, Bungendore and Albury shows. It won the Ladies Choice Award at Wagga in 2015.

Petersville under construction – mid 2014

Petersville” is an HO scale layout designed to provide maximum action at any exhibition.  It is based on a coal mine with a small town nearby. Rail traffic consists of block coal trains, plus interstate traffic on the main line nearby – mainly containers, wheat and passenger traffic.  There is be plenty of shunting action at the Terrytown Yard and associated with the coal mine.  Petersville does not have a fiddle yard as such. 

The layout is designed so that the audience can view it from all sides.  Control is from several points around the layout. The control system is DCC radio control, with points controlled by macros.  This system was also used on our previous exhibition layout, and it works very well.

The layout is composed of 6 modules, each 1.8m x 1.2m.  Each module will fit into the Club trailer and the complete layout and all ancillary equipment can be easily carried in one load. The layout sits on a 25mm steel base with a 6mm baseboard. 


Petersville in action at the 2015 Wagga Wagga annual model railway exhibition.

Kid’s U-Drive aka Smith’s Crossing 

Smith’s Crossing is a simple layout designed specifically for Children.  It has four independent tracks on two levels with four controllers, one on each corner.  That way, four children can individually “drive” their own train – usually flat out!

Smith’s Crossing attracting kids of all ages at the 2014 multi-cultural festival

The layout is very popular with children and is frequently operated at venues such as the Hall Markets, Bunnings, retirement homes, etc.  Apart from providing entertainment, the layout is used as a means to promote our annual exhibition.  It usually has a very busy schedule in the December – March period.

The control system is DC.  The track is HO scale and the locomotives and rolling stock are donations and hand-me-downs.  A varied collection on the track, but the operators don’t mind at all – as long as it goes and goes fast!

Construction of the layout was mostly done by the Daylighters group which meets on a Tuesday morning.  The baseboard is the usual plywood with a pine wood supporting structure.  It is constructed in two sections, each 1.2m x 1.8m providing a total surface area of 2.4m x 1.8m. The scenery is mounted on polystyrene covered with plaster bandages.  It has proven to be a stable resilient surface that a variety of ground cover can be used on.

The layout is populated with dinosaurs and aliens.  Trying to find and count them all is a favourite occupation for the small fry.

This layout is nearing the end of its useful life and construction of a replacement will commence in early 2016.

Smith’s crossing at our railway expo at University High School, Kaleen in 2013


Check out these layouts built by two of our members from the US

Birmingham District Model Railroad

Birmingham Southern Model Railroad



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